National News

Family grieves loss of second baby in two years

Posted July 16, 2018 10:27 p.m. EDT

— The family of an 11-month-old Idaho Falls girl is grieving after the child died last week following surgery at Primary Children's Hospital.

Serenity Flatland passed away July 9 at 4:40 a.m., according to her mother, Kelsee Flatland.

The baby was born July 19, 2017 – three months early – and had multiple health problems. Doctors diagnosed her with esophageal atresia, a birth defect where the esophagus doesn't connect with the stomach. Her colon and bladder were also joined together.

Doctors performed surgery July 3 to connect Serenity's esophagus to her stomach using a piece of her intestine. She struggled following the surgery and doctors later determined she had a rare gastrointestinal bacteria in the pouch of her esophagus, which moved into her lungs and then to her bloodstream.

On Sunday, July 8, Serenity's lungs collapsed and she subsequently went into a coma before her death.

Serenity's older sister, Zyra Flatland, died in September 2016 after drowning in a bathtub. Kelsee Flatland was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and spoke with about the ordeal earlier this year.

Serenity's funeral will be held Monday evening. A GoFundMe account has been established to help pay for expenses.

"It was all so sudden and way too fast. For once I'm going to admit that I am not okay. I know she's perfect and it was her time, but I'm selfish and I was not expecting or ready for her to go," Kelsee Flatland said. "I'm grateful for the Plan of Salvation, I just hate having to deal with the hardships of life. I'm not angry at God, however. He gave me this precious baby when I needed her most."